November 14th, 2008

CLASS (1983) ** ½

Andrew McCarthy is the new kid at a fancy prep school.  His roommate (Rob Lowe) plays a hilarious prank on him so he retaliates with a devious prank of his own.  Knowing that they both are ingenious pranksters, they become best friends.  When it comes out that Andrew is a virgin, Rob sends him out to the city to get laid and Andrew picks up a more than willing cougar (Jaqueline Bisset) who pops his cherry.  They see each other every weekend, but like most women, she irrationally breaks up with him.  Andrew becomes severely depressed so Rob tries to cheer him up by taking him home with him for Christmas break.  It turns out that ol’ Jackie is Rob’s mother, which leads to more complications.


Class features some pretty good performances and holds your attention throughout its 98 minute running time.  It’s an early Brat Pack movie so it’s got that going for it, as well as the MILF angle, which is always a plus.  Unfortunately, the script is hopelessly contrived as the “plot” feels more or less forced upon the characters.  The film also veers from comedy to drama so abruptly that even the characters seem to be having a hard time keeping track.  The total non-ending doesn’t help one bit either.  And for a movie called Class, there was only ONE scene where the students actually went to class!


A lot of folks made their film debuts with this flick.  Not only was it McCarthy’s first film, but Class also introduced John Cusack, Casey Siemaszko, Virginia Madsen (who lets her tit pop out in one scene), Lolita Davidovich and Suzanne Snyder to the world as well.  Seeing all their familiar faces turning up adds some fun to the proceedings.

FUZZ (1972) **

Burt Reynolds, Jack Weston, Tom Skerritt and Raquel Welch star as a ragtag group of Boston cops in this meandering action comedy based on Ed McBain’s 87th Precinct novels.  Reynolds goes undercover as a bum to catch a duo of juvenile delinquents who get their kicks by setting homeless people on fire.  Meanwhile Skerritt is trying to figure out a way to stop a mad bomber known only as “The Deaf Man” (Yul Brynner) from blowing up several elected officials.  These plot threads inexplicably merge during the highly unlikely and poorly edited finale that relies heavily on not only incredible coincidence, but sheer stupidity as well. 


I really like Burt, Tom and Raquel, but since Fuzz is one of those ensemble MASH-style deals where characters come in and out of the story and the plot comes and goes as it pleases, none of them get a whole heck of a lot to do.  On top of that, none of the performers have any chemistry together during the ever-so-brief scenes they do spend with each other.  The ending is as sloppy as it is stupid and reeks of either sheer laziness or total incompetence, I’m not sure which.


Director Richard A. Colla’s credits are mostly limited to made-for-TV crap (he’s the man who directed the Brady Bunch expose, Growing Up Brady) so it’s understandable why so much of Fuzz is an unfocused mess.  I will say this for Colla, he does create an authentic blue collar atmosphere in the scenes that take place in the precinct house.  While these scenes work up to a point, it’s the parts where Burt and Tom are running around the city making an ass out of themselves that are totally pathetic.  The scene where Tom and Raquel got stuck in a sleeping bag together was good for a laugh though.


Speaking of Raquel, we do get to see her wearing a bra, but sadly we do not get to see Raquel au natural.

WEREWOLF (1996) *

As a general rule, I usually don’t like to use the word “retarded” when describing a movie.  In our overly sensitive times, the word “retarded” is kinda frowned upon as being “Politically Incorrect” so I try to respect people’s feelings as much as possible.  Apologies in advance folks, but the only word that can aptly describe Werewolf is… RETARDED!


First we start off with like five minutes of some truly unbearable Indian chanting over the opening credits before the plots begins.  Okay so there’s this archeological dig out in the Arizona desert presided over by a guy named Noel (Richard Lynch from Invasion USA).  They discover a skeleton of a werewolf; or as the Indians like to call it, a “Yanaglachi”.  Noel’s partner Yuri (George Rivero) gets into a fight with one of the Indian workers and the dude accidentally falls onto the skeleton and cuts himself on the werewolf’s teeth.  That night, he turns into a werewolf and is promptly gunned down by his good Native American buddy, played by none other than Joe Estevez. 


Luckily, Yuri collected a blood sample from the poor dope and the next night, he slips a random security guard a Mickey and injects him with the werewolf blood.  The Rent-A-Cop is rather unfazed by his new lycanthropic ways and decides to drive home during a full moon.  Apparently, werewolves don’t make for good drivers and he crashes his car and dies. 


Yuri’s got the hots for his co-worker Natalie (Adrianna Miles) but she only has eyes for Paul (Fred Cavalli), a sensitive writer.  When she’s showing off the Yanaglachi skeleton to Paul, Yuri gets so jealous that he slugs Paul with its skull and cuts him with it.  That night, Paul predictably turns into a werewolf and goes around killing people.  In the end, Natalie’s able to sooth the savage beast and (SHOCK!) becomes a werewolf herself. 


So you see, when I call this movie retarded, it’s totally justified.  Honestly, what other word can you think of that describes a werewolf driving a car?  That’s just what it is… retarded. 


Also, for whatever reason, everyone in this movie speaks in impenetrable accents and you’ll be lucky if you only understand about every third word they’re saying.  (Miles refers to the werewolf as a “Waur-wilf!”!)  Plus, Rivero’s hair changes from scene to scene, which adds to the film’s unending WTF-ness.


Another astonishing fact is that there are no less than FOUR werewolves in this movie and none of them are any good.  Seriously, the make-up in this flick makes the werewolf from Teen Wolf Too look like An American Werewolf in London.  Not only that, but the ending totally rips off of Wolf as well. 


And you thought all those Howling sequels were bad. 


P.S.  Remember:  You can always tell who’s a Yanaglachi by his sleeping habits!  “They sleep like a coyote, nose to anus!”


AKA:  Arizona Werewolf.